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November 15, 2018, Los Angeles
Los Angeles has experienced a one-of-a-kind robbery, which involves sheriff and cannabis. Yes, you read that right. An LA County Deputy and his two accomplices are facing charges for armed robbery and a plot to distribute a controlled substance. They will appear in federal court on Friday.
The details of this ‘armed robbery’ are quite astounding. Deputy Mark Antrim and his partners in crime pulled off a heist of roughly $1 million in cash and marijuana by posing as narcotics investigators and raiding a cannabis warehouse in the downtown LA. The LAPD came to know about the incident days after it happened. They wouldn’t have found about the heist had the warehouse’s attorney not filed a complaint.
On October 29, Mark Antrim and his accomplices arrived at the warehouse in the early morning hours in a vehicle that belonged to the LA Sheriff Department. All three of them were wearing department badges and carrying handguns and short rifles. They told the warehouse staff that they were executing a search warrant and rounded them up. After detaining all the staff members, including two bodyguards in the vehicle, Antrim and his accomplices proceeded to load cash bundles and cannabis packages into a rental truck.
One of the detained staff members managed to call the LAPD through a cell phone. The police officers reached the crime scene, but Antrim effectively convinced them that he was executing a narcotics search warrant. After questioning Antrim for 15 minutes, the officers left the scene. Antrim and his accomplices continued the heist after the LAPD personnel left the place.
The attorney of the warehouse contacted LAPD and shared the chronology of the events that happened in the early hours of October 29. In the following days, federal agents and LAPD officials raided the residence of Antrim and his accomplices to find more than $300,000 in cash and a whole lot of cannabis. According to the charge sheet prepared by the Department of Justice, Antrim and Co. robbed $100,000 in cash and 600 pounds of marijuana.
The incident has sent a shock wave among law enforcement quarters. The LA Sheriff’s Department is going to prosecute its deputy for this horrendous criminal activity. The department is also facilitating the federal administration in the investigation. FBI’s assistant director of the LA field office has termed Antrim’s conduct an outrageous level of corruption that put the safety of fellow police officers in jeopardy.
Legal Cannabis Businesses Face Banking Woes
The cannabis industry can’t make the most of banking services because of federal restrictions. As a result, they have to handle a large amount of hard cash on their own, thereby making them vulnerable to robberies and break-ins. This is the reason why Antrim and his fellows found a large amount of hard cash in the warehouse.